Estuary West by Martyn McKenzie
Emerge commissioned young and early career artists from Inverclyde to explore their creative practice in new ways, honing their skills and developing new work. Commissions were for £1,000 each and the most exciting and innovative projects were selected by the panel. 2016s artists were;
Martyn McKenzie – Landscape Painting
Tiffany Broadfoot – Contemporary Dance
Calum McMillan – Photography / Multi-media
Chris Patrick – Writing
Artists were also asked to deliver two skill-sharing session to groups in Inverclyde. These included school groups and a social media skills session for libraries staff. The exhibition featured diverse examples of the work produced by the four young artists.
Galoshans is a Hallowe’en tradition that dates back to the 12th Century in Scotland and was traditionally a folk play based on death and resurrection. A troupe of townsfolk would dress-up as a gang of stock characters, chap on the doors and perform in the houses. As a reward they would receive a penny or a piece of fruit and perhaps, at the braw hoose, a dram. From this emerged the tradition of guising which travelled across the pond to become ‘trick or treating’. Although the play died out across Scotland around the late 19th century, for some reason the word ‘Galoshans’ held on in Inverclyde and was used to mean guising. The Galoshans Festival re-imagined that tradition in a glorious pageant of publicly engaged art happenings and events.
In partnership with production company UZ Arts and the Beacon Arts Centre, Hallowe’en in Greenock attracted some of the finest European artists and performers including Olivier Grossetete with his extraordinary cardboard towers and Frank Bolter with a paper boat (above), made in homage to the late, great George Wyllie . The weekend climaxed with a Hallowe’en parade led by street bands Orkestra Del Sol and Brass Aye.
VESSELS 2014 and VESSELS 2015
Vessels was a partnership between The Beacon Arts Centre in Scotland, Pan-African Arts, Articulet artivist group in Jamaica and Noyam dance school in Ghana. It sought to re-imagine the Trade Triangle in a spirit of freedom and equity, the items of commerce being ideas and creativity. Young people from the three organisations met at the Beacon Arts Centre in Greenock and over the course of a week explored the themes implied by the word vessels; journeys, blood, what we take with is and what we leave behind. This culminated in a breath-taking performance of dance, music and spoken word.
Engine Shed was a public art research and development project funded by the Inverclyde Place Partnership and Creative Scotland. It responded to recent public art procurements in the area and working with professional artists asked the question, “Can the public make the art?”